Get Sunkissed Without the Risk: Best Bronzers for $30 or Less
Prescriptives Mineral Bronzer ($30.00) is available in both Cool and Warm, which is something I can really appreciate from Prescriptives. I can just imagine some of the trials our cool-toned beauty addicts have to go through to find a bronzer that works well. I picked up the Warm Mineral Bronzer, and it’s smooth, silky in texture, and it gives me a subtle, natural glow. There is shimmer in it, which Prescriptives calls Radiance Emitting Crystals Complex (R.E.C.) — a combination of amethyst, rose quartz, and calcite. It’s oil-free and talc-free for those concerned about ingredients and oil.
MAC Bronzing Powder ($21.00) comes in three shades: Golden, Refined Golden, and Bronze. Golden is suitable for paler to medium-toned complexions, and it is not quite as pigmented as the other two shades. Refined Golden is a good color for those who are medium-toned in complexion, though it does seem to run a little peachier/orange-y if you are really cool-toned. Bronze is best suited for deeper complexions, and it does have some shimmer in its finish. MAC’s Bronzing Powder does seem to run a bit more pigmented than the typical bronzer, so take heed and use a light hand when you first give it a try. The shimmer may be too much or too little, depending on your preference, but the wear time is tops for this bronzer.
Smashbox Bronze Lights ($28.00) is available in two shades: Suntanned Matte and Sunkissed Matte. Bronze Lights is a silky, matte bronzer–aka no shimmer or glitter or any frostiness in its finish. Those with larger pores, skin concerns, or signs of aging will appreciate Bronze Lights’ lack of shimmer. It’s also a nice way to get a beautiful, sunkissed glow, which you can always highlight with your favorite highlighter. I often prefer to highlight separately, because then I can actually highlight, rather than just have shimmer everywhere I applied the bronzer. (In my case, I like to highlight the tops of cheekbones.) Sunkissed Matte will best suit paler and peachier/pinker complexions, I think, while Suntanned Matte is better for medium to dark complexions as it’s more on the brown side. I didn’t find either to run orange, though!
We’ve got three more top picks for bronzers! Continue reading →
LUSH Cupcake Fresh Face Mask ($7.95 for 2.6 oz.) is one of Lush’s quick and easy face masks that you can purchase in-store (because they’re just *that* fresh). Cupcake is designed for oily, more acne-prone skin. According to the label, Rhassoul mud cleanses and soothes skin, while several other ingredientsh elp to soften it. Several essential oils make it a relaxing experience while you wear the mask for five to ten minutes. I wear mine for about ten minutes, and then I turn on the faucet for warm/tepid water. I wet my hands, and then I gently massage the scrub away in small circles. I find this just seems to relax me (because it’s kind of a facial massage), but it also makes me feel like it’s deeper cleansing. Just rinse any remaining residue off by splashing your face.
The only downside to the mask is I do find it tends to leave a little bit of residue behind, so I like to use either a cotton pad and my toner or a light cleanser to make sure everything is off. (I just can’t risk *any* bad things getting into my skin these days, so no chances for me.) Otherwise, this mask makes me feel relaxed, my skin feel fresh and rejuvenated, and since starting to use Lush face masks, I swear my skin has been happier!
Oh, and I did I mention this smells like extra rich hot chocolate? Yummy!
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Aromatherapy Optimism – Bright Blossoms Sudsing Scrub ($13.00) is a body scrub that foams up while exfoliating the skin. It smells like jasmine and spring to me. It contains small sugar grains that help you exfoliate your skin. A lot of exfoliating products don’t foam up, so it’s nice to see one that does. It feels pretty gentle against the skin, and the sugar granules melt against the skin after they’ve been massaged into the skin. You get a good amount for your buck, and I tend to cheap out for shower products–if only because so much ends up down the drain!
I like using this one with a loofah, which I can’t do with a lot of body scrubs, because it does foam up quite a bit. It lathers really well (much like a regular body wash) so a loofah is just perfect for getting suds up from head to toe.
Crabtree & Evelyn Relaxing Body Lotion ($19.50 for 8.5 fl. oz.) is a really nice blend of lavender and chamomile essential oils, which are both scents known to help relax/calm you. I love to use this on my legs and arms a half hour before I get into bed, because it helps me remember to take time for myself and just *breathe* after a busy day. Super bonus is my legs feel hydrated and smooth!
For those of you watching your ingredients, this lotion is free of parabens, sodium lauryl sulfates, and sodium laureth sulfates. There is also a coordinating cream body wash, flroal body smoother, and a comforting body night cream. The body night cream is going to run a little thicker, so if your skin isn’t super dry, you can stick with the body lotion and be just fine. I, on the other hand, will probably pick up the body night cream for my dry, scaly dragon legs.
It’s my first time trying Crabtree & Evelyn products, so I’d love to know what your favorites are!
Ischia, Lipari, Monte Carlo, Panarea, Porto Rotondo, Salina
Last week, I shared lip swatches from Chanel’s Cote d’Azur Collection designed for the summer season. Here are photos and skin swatches of the new lipsticks and glosses featured in this launch. Continue reading →
Laura Mercier’s Gilded Garden Collection debuted for the spring season with several fun, perfect-for-spring products. The collection included eyeshadows in Lilac, Marigold, Orchid, and Pink Tulip ($22.00 each); Stickgloss in Azalea and Tiger Lily ($20.00 each); and Lip Stains in English Rose and Hibiscus ($20.00 each); and the Gilded Garden Mosaic Shimmer Bloc ($38.00).
The Gilded Garden Mosaic Shimmer Bloc features a pretty flowery pattern in it, which just screams “SPRING!” to me. The two large flowers in a coral-pink and fuchsia-pink are slightly raised. They’re raised enough that I wasn’t able to swatch through to see if they go all the way through the powder. (But I’m hoping they do.)
This Shimmer Bloc is much like Bobbi Brown’s Shimmerbricks in the texture and finish–smooth, but still quite frosty. If you’re not a fan of noticeable shimmer/frost, then I’d definitely stay clear of this. If, however, you love Shimmerbricks, you’ll want to check out Laura Mercier’s Shimmer Blocs.
The overall color you get when swirling the entire Shimmer Bloc together is a almost neutral-but-slightly-cool, frosty pink. It can be used as a blusher or to highlight your favorite pink blushes.
Anyone else have this?
See close-ups and swatches… Continue reading →